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Sleeve for Cat5

Discussion in 'Cables & Switches' started by Stereo Steve, Dec 18, 2004.

  1. Stereo Steve

    Stereo Steve
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    I have already made some fairly long Cat5 speaker cables from the purple Maplin stuff and a mate wants me to make him some too. He asked if it would be possible to remove the sleeving on the cat5 and bundle all the conductors together and then re-sleeve as a single cable as opposed to braiding.

    Any experiences with this or suggestions on how I might get a nice tight and attractive sleeve around 24 or 32 cat5 conductors?
     
  2. Knightshade

    Knightshade
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    I have heard of this being done. Electrical cord braid would do the job. I'm unsure where you would buy this in sufficient lengths though. As Cat5 cable is UTP (Unshielded Twisted pair) I don't see any issue of degrading the quality by removing the outer sheath. If you could first wrap Aluminium foil round the cables to act as a shield it may even improve things.
     
  3. eviljohn2

    eviljohn2
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    Sounds like a nightmare to me as there are several pairs in a single cable. I would suggest a different cable design if he really wants to do this or putting a bigger bit of heatshrink over the whole thing.

    One of the key points of this cable design is the internal geometry of each cable so pulling these apart would make it all a bit redundant IMO. You may as well just get some regular solid core wire which would be much cheaper. :)
     
  4. cwick

    cwick
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    There's a webpage out there somewhere covering this ... either on TNT-Audio (one of their FFRC designs), or a link from there, or a google on FFRC, or something else ... sorry, I'll see if I can find it later.

    Pretty sure www.cpc.co.uk have the heatshrink you'll need to do it (I remember that the mystery web-page gave details of which heatshrink to use, and I remember finding it at either cpc or Maplins).

    Sorry I couldn't be more vague.
     
  5. teabag1605

    teabag1605
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  6. cwick

    cwick
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    I think it has to be in twisted pairs that are correctly braided to get the benefits of this particular cable design. That multi-core doesn't look like it is.
     
  7. Stereo Steve

    Stereo Steve
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    Problem with Cat5 is that some pairs are twisted more than others. My idea is to take out the 2 tightly twisted pairs from each cable and double them up for one set of cables and the two loosely twisted pairs for another set. So I end up with equal twists. This involves removing the outer sleeve which is very easy on Cat5 as there is a cord inside to do it. The problem is putting it all back together. Heat shrink maybe OK but I'm worried about the overall look of a long length of it (not that I have tried it to be honest). Foil is a great idea though and one I hadn't thought of.
     
  8. cwick

    cwick
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  9. Knightshade

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    Sore Fingers a plenty for that design! :)
    The braid recommended by Cwick was what I was trying to remember. Should do the job well. It will certainly look better than the twisted mess of multi coloured cables in the link. (Obviously a single man....)
    I really would be interested to hear how you get on with construction and testing of this cable.
    Good Luck.
     
  10. Stereo Steve

    Stereo Steve
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    The braid looks good, I'll order up a few bits of various sizes and try it.
     
  11. Mylo

    Mylo
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    Steve, be very careful when heatshrinking the ends if using this braid as it melts very very easily.
     

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